Opportunities Await on the Open Waters
Hampton Dive Center
Did you know that the Hamptons are home to some of the best lobster boat wreck diving on the Eastern Seaboard? Whether you’re an experienced and certified scuba pro or a first-time diver interested in learning more, the confident, capable team at Hampton Dive Center will have you under the water in no time. Their “Learn to Dive” program will allow you to achieve PADI open water diver certification via the universally recognized three-step process of academics (about 15 hours of coursework), pool dives (in the comfort of their 20×40, 10-foot-deep saltwater pool), and open water dives (four dives over two days).
Provide your own equipment or purchase it with your package; you can begin the academics virtually immediately thanks to their e-learning tools, allowing you to return from your Hamptons sojourn fully scuba certified. Divers who have already achieved their certification can participate in everything from deep-water dives to wreck diving, and the Center also hosts frequent trips to dive sites around the world when you’re ready to depart the East End.
On Noyack Bay just off Sag Harbor, you can enjoy all the thrills and perks of owning a boat without any of the famously pesky hassles. Riders Watersports offer hourly boat rentals complete with captain and crew on vessels outfitted for everything from wake boarding to tubing to water skiing. Adept with beginners and experienced riders alike, they take the challenge out of tow-behind activities, expertly piloting the boat and leaving you
and your friends to enjoy the sunshine, surf, and sporting.
Their Watersports Camp is ideal for young would- be riders, and the less adventurously inclined will delight in their “water taxi” service, a leisurely sail that’s available by the hour and offers an expansive tour of the bay. Otherwise, minimum bookings begin at two hours – but you’ll likely want far more time to experience all of the thrills on offer. Bring water, sunscreen, and a hunger for action!
NY Kite Center
If you’ve ever gawked at the majestic kite surfers from the safety of the shore and thought, “I wish I could do that,” the NY Kite Center is for you. Offering gear sales and rentals, this one-stop kiting shop will outfit you in a wetsuit, booties, harness, board, and helmet, then get you flying in no time. Lessons range from absolute basics of “Pre-Flight,” taught on land, to the more complicated mechanics of “Take Off” and then the thrill of “Power Up,” where you’ll learn to stay upwind and keep your feet on the board as your kite tows you racing along the surface of the water.
On that they describe as “butter flat” water in the Great South Bay just off Amityville is an extraordinary way to learn a new skill as well as a valuable resource for more experienced kite riders looking to up their game or upgrade their gear. Combo packs that include all three lessons are available for a discounted price.
From their home base at the Star Island Yacht Club, Montauk Parasail will change your perspective on the Hamptons – literally. Soar to towering heights of as much as 1,000 feet above the water for as little as $75 per flight. Experienced captains and instructors take the edge out of your “altitude adjustment,” and for those who are really feeling adventuresome, we recommend the daily sunset cruise, an adults-only affair complete with a happy hour and gorgeous views of the sun as it descends to the watery horizon.
And there’s no reason to fret that your flight will destroy your happy hour attire; thanks to a custom parasail platform, you can enjoy a dry take-off and landing (though the captain and crew are also happy to “dip” you at your request!). The on-board photo package is a smart addition; for about half the cost of your flight, you’ll be free to leave your digital camera or smartphone somewhere safe and dry (and closer to the ground).